Out-of-hospital cardiac arrest outcomes with "pit crew" resuscitation and scripted initiation of mechanical CPR

Louis Gonzales, Brandon K Oyler, Jeff L Hayes, Mark E Escott, Jose G Cabanas, Paul R Hinchey, Lawrence H Brown
American Journal of Emergency Medicine 2019, 37 (5): 913-920

OBJECTIVE: To compare OHCA outcomes in patients managed with mechanical versus manual CPR in an EMS system with a "pit crew" approach to resuscitation and a scripted sequence for the initiation of mechanical CPR.

METHODS: Through a year-long quality improvement effort we standardized the initial resuscitative efforts for OHCA, prioritizing a "pit crew" approach to high quality manual CPR, early defibrillation and basic airway management ahead of a scripted sequence for initiating mechanical CPR. We then analyzed outcomes for adult, non-traumatic OHCA attended in the following year (2016). We used a propensity score matched analysis to compare ROSC, survival to discharge, and neurologic status among patients managed with manual versus mechanical CPR while controlling for patient demographics and arrest characteristics.

RESULTS: Of 444 eligible OHCAs, 217 received manual and 227 received mechanical CPR. Crude ROSC (39.2% vs. 29.1%) and survival to discharge (13.8% vs. 5.7%) were higher with manual CPR. In the propensity matched analysis (n = 176 manual CPR; 176 mechanical CPR), both ROSC (38.6% vs. 28.4%; difference: 10.2%; CI: 0.4% to 20.0%) and survival to discharge (13.6% vs. 6.8%; difference: 6.8%; CI: 0.5% to 13.3%) remained significantly higher for patients receiving manual CPR.

CONCLUSIONS: In this EMS system with a standardized, "pit crew" approach to OHCA that prioritized initial high-quality initial resuscitative efforts and scripted the sequence for initiating mechanical CPR, use of mechanical CPR was associated with decreased ROSC and decreased survival to discharge.

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